Vodafone, NEC conduct first O-RAN voice call in partnership with Altiostar, Telecom News, ET Telecom

NEW DELHI: Dutch telecoms operator Vodafone, NEC Europe, a wholly-owned subsidiary of NEC Corporation, and Altiostar on Tuesday jointly said they have conducted the first voice call on an open Radio Access Network (Open RAN) on Vodafone’s network in the Netherlands.

Open RAN technology allows the disaggregation of hardware from software and enables the creation of an open ecosystem that can support multiple vendors.

Furthermore, Vodafone and NEC said they plan to integrate solutions of Open RAN technology vendors such as Altiostar and other radio vendors, including NEC’s own 5G radio products, using commercial off the shelf (COTS) hardware from third-parties to enable Vodafone to transform its network to a software-based one.

ETTelecom previously reported that IT services provider Tech Mahindra’s wholly-owned subsidiary TechM Americas has sold its stake in Altiostar Networks for $45 million to Rakuten’s US subsidiary.

In 2018, Tech Mahindra had acquired a 17.5% stake in the US-based telecom software development company Altiostar Networks for $15 million.

Altiostar provides 4G and 5G virtualized RAN software solution that supports open interfaces and disaggregates the hardware from the software to build an open and secure multi-vendor web-scale network.

India’s Bharti Airtel has recently deployed Altiostar’s open virtual radio access network (vRAN) solution for its 4G network across multiple major cities in India. The solution has 5G ready software and would provide seamless evolution to 5G using the same architecture.

“We are delighted to work together with NEC towards the first live Open RAN site,” said Ruud Koeyvoets, Vodafone Mobile Networks’ Director.

“The introduction of technology enables us to introduce new suppliers, such as Altiostar, giving us greater flexibility when rolling out our mobile network. We’re proud to be pioneering the development of Open RAN and will be monitoring the performance of this pilot,” Koeyvoets added.

“We are proud to embark on this journey together with Vodafone that will transform mobile network economics while deploying technology with greater flexibility, greater efficiencies, and more agility,” said Yogarajah Gopikrishna, General Manager at NEC Europe.

“By integrating best of breed solutions, NEC, as an experienced Open RAN System Integrator, is committed to bring transformative change to the telecommunications space leveraging our long history and experience in mobile network solutions,” Gopikrishna.

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